Charges filed in weekend tractor theft, police chase

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Gregrey Tyler and Jesse Bell.

JEFFERSON COUNTY, Mo. – Two Dittmer men were charged Tuesday with stealing a tractor, leading law enforcement on a chase across two counties, and firing shots at a sheriff’s deputy over the weekend.

According to a spokesperson for the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, the ordeal began around 6 p.m. Sunday in the 8700 block of Canyon Lane in Dittmer. Deputies were responding to a call about two individuals in a pickup truck attempting to steal a farm tractor.

Deputies came across the suspects as they were loading the tractor onto a trailer. When deputies turned on their lights, the suspects fled in the pickup.

The tractor eventually fell off the trailer near De Soto.

The sheriff’s office said the suspect in the passenger seat of the truck fired three shots at the pursuing deputies but no one was injured.

Deputies deployed spike strips to disable the pickup and the suspects eventually bailed out of the truck on Click Road in Washington County and were taken into custody a short time later.

During the chase, the suspects veered around a bystander’s car and a deputy struck the innocent driver’s vehicle. No one was hurt.

Investigators later learned the pickup had been reported stolen in the county.

The Jefferson County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office charged both 22-year-old Gregrey Tyler and 40-year-old Jesse Bell with first-degree assault on a law enforcement officer, first-degree tampering, stealing over $750, resisting arrest, and armed criminal action.

Both Tyler and Bell remain in custody at Jefferson County Jail without bond.

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